By Kady Weddle
If you’re in the mood for traditional charbroiled chicken and steaks, look no further than the Patron Pollo n Beef food truck at 12325 State Line Rd. Now their second location, which opened earlier this month, Marilyn Reyna and husband Lino Perez call their story a “Miracle of God.”
Reyna, originally from Laredo, Texas, and Perez, originally from Oxaca, Mexico, started out as partners in the Mexican restaurant Patron 2 Tacos Jarochos with a storefront in Olathe and its own food truck on Metropolitan Ave. However, taking the leap into the food truck business for themselves took some convincing on Reyna’s part.
“As women, we are ambitious to do something better in life and I pushed my husband to do the same,” said Reyna.
After purchasing and revitalizing the already recognized Patrón Pollo N Beef Olathe location in 2018, Reyna and Perez modified established recipes and quickly doubled sales.
“Whether you win or you lose, you have to try,” says Reyna. “I’m the type of person that likes challenges to prove to myself that I can make it. Whether we win or lose it’s something we learn from.”
Their second truck purchase sat idle for almost two years before a long-time Olathe customer reached out to the couple to offer their idea on a second location. The customer was the wife of 123rd and State Line Conoco owner Imran Lohdi.
“Of course, we wanted to hit not only a Latino clientele but everyone else as well,” said Reyna. “State Line has a more diverse customer base, and we want everyone in the area to know we offer great chicken.”
Currently also pursuing her bachelor’s degree in social work at Park University, Reyna says their main goal is to open more food trucks and continue to offer jobs to people that need them.
“We started with two employees and now we have 10,” she said. “I feel like if you put God first in your life, God is going to give you so much. It’s thanks to God we have this business. This is a great journey for me and my husband.”